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Top of Vail Tour

 5.0 (1)
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Length

3.8 Miles 6.1 Kilometers


Elevation

744' 227 m

Ascent

-731' -223 m

Descent

7%

Avg Grade (4°)

24%

Max Grade (14°)

10,992' 3,350 m

High

10,318' 3,145 m

Low

Conditions


Unknown

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Experience a super scenery and wildflower tour along Vail's high points.

Nick Wilder

Overview [Suggest Changes]

A great loop with outstanding views and fields full of wildflowers in the spring and summer.
Features: Views — Wildflowers [Add/Remove]
Family Friendly: The whole family can appreciate this rxh's moderate grades, manageable length, and spectacular views.
Dogs: Leashed

Description [Suggest Changes]

Find your way from the gondola to the Ridge Route, which initially parallels the Grand Traverse Trail but gradually veers away to cross ski runs, wildflower meadows, and shady groves. It climbs uphill fairly steadily until the top of the Game Creek Chairlift, where it ends at the intersection of Ptarmigan Loop.

If you like wildflowers and great views, you're going to love Ptarmigan Loop. Contour around Ptarmigan Ridge and Ptarmigan Point (10,977 ft). The trail surface is smooth-packed dirt, so you can safely raise your eyes to admire the abundant flowers and look for late-season mushrooms. Salute the two carved wooden figures and share their views of Mt. Holy Cross, Meadow Mountain, the Gore Range, and the back bowls of Vail. As the trail ends back at the Game Creek Chair, follow signs for this trail's intersection with Grand Escape, which is past the Wildwood Chairlift nearby.

This well-marked, serene trail has off-the-charts fields of dense wildflowers in all varieties. The top half of this trail is the best, following just below Eagles Nest Ridge and affording spectacular, panoramic views of the Gore Range. Once the trail crosses the Main Vail service road, it becomes doubletrack and less aesthetic, although the views to the west are still good. After entering and exiting a few sets of trees, the trail appears to end at a service road and a nearby tubing area lift. To reach Eagles Nest and the Lionshead Gondola, take a left heading up the Main Vail service road for about 20 feet and look for signs to a doubletrack leading down past Ridge Route etc. to the gondola and Eagles Nest.

Flora & Fauna [Suggest Changes]

There are wildflowers galore on this hike. You'll pass through fir, spruce, aspen, and will probably see deer. Bear, elk, and moose are occasionally seen, and mountain lions live here, though you probably won't ever see one.

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Check-Ins

Aug 29, 2017
Eric Dalfort Defrance
Jul 29, 2017
Nick Wilder
Jul 8, 2017
Nick Wilder

Trail Ratings

  5.0 from 1 vote

#1

in Vail Resort

#582

Overall
  5.0 from 1 vote
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Rankings

#1

in Vail Resort

#122

in Colorado

#582

Overall
429 Views Last Month
1,473 Since Jul 9, 2017
Easy/Intermediate Easy/Intermediate

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